Pundit names perfect manager not in limelight who would ‘transform’ Man Utd, amid Pochettino fear

Date published: Wednesday 24th November 2021 7:16 - Jonny Whitfield

Owen Hargreaves, Cristiano Ronaldo April 2016

Manchester United should be targeting Spain boss Luis Enrique as a candidate to become their new manager amid fears over Mauricio Pochettino’s availability, according to one pundit.

The Red Devils are looking for their fifth manager of the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era, following Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s sacking on Sunday. Since then, Pochettino has emerged as the leading candidate.

The former Tottenham boss is reportedly willing to leave Paris Saint-Germain mid-season. Indeed, he supposedly has concerns about the dressing room at the French giants.

Other potential considerations have included Ajax’s Erik ten Hag. As for an interim manager before then, meanwhile, United have reportedly held talks with former Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde.

Another ex-Barca boss who has been loosely mentioned in the running is Enrique. The 51-year-old guided the Catalan club to the treble in his first season.

Following his departure, he took up the Spain national team job and led the side to the Euro 2020 semi-finals. According to Owen Hargreaves, he should be a bigger consideration.

“I think one name that’s not on there which I’d like to see is Luis Enrique,” the pundit told BT Sport.

“If you manage a big club like Barcelona and you win the treble there, and then you can go and take a pretty average team to a semi-final…

“I think that’s the type of guy – and he’s only managing the national team. He could come in and do the job now.

“I think he would transform Manchester United into a good team, into a great team.”


A look at some of the more leftfield Man Utd boss contenders


Pochettino remains the leading name and United would have to pay PSG £10million in compensation to prise him away mid-season. That figure would halve next summer.

However, speaking at a press conference for the first time, the Argentine insisted that he feels focused on PSG.

Pochettino addresses Man Utd rumours

Erik ten Hag, Mauricio Pochettino

He said: “I am not a child. The rumours are there, I understand what is going on. But this type of thing cannot distract me. Rumours are there and we need to leave it at that.

“We are still focused. We are focusing 100 per cent to try to get the best form.

“I’m so happy in Paris St Germain and I am so focused. I was a player in Paris St Germain, I love the club, I love the fans. It is a fantastic time to be at the club.

“My contract is to 2023, this season and one more. I don’t say nothing different.

“I am really happy at Paris St Germain – that is a fact.”

Hargreaves was speaking after Man Utd beat Villarreal in the Champions League to ensure their passage into the last 16.

 

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